Bingham stars as Methody storm back to retain crown
Methodist College 20 RBAI 5 Ulster Schools snr Cup final
Methodist College clinched back-to-back crowns as they proved too strong for Belfast rivals RBAI at Ravenhill.
Methody were odds-on favourites, but a shock looked to be on the cards when RBAI got the first try of the game.
Methody, using their strong pack, responded well, and scored 20 unanswered points to claim a 34th outright title
Captain Josh Atkinson gave RBAI the lead after 12 minutes. After they turned over a five-metre scrum, out-half John McClure was stopped short, but scrum-half Connor Young spun the ball wide for Atkinson to go over unopposed. McClure missed the conversion.
Out-half Josh Bingham scored a try for Methody to level the scores on 32 minutes.
Methody had forced a couple of five-metre scrums, No 8 James Gallagher went close, the ball was recycled and Bingham had the strength to go over.
He missed the conversion and was also off target with a drop goal attempt, so the scores were level at 5-5 at the interval.
Methody took the lead with a well-worked try from winger Conor Kelly. Rudi Benade burst through at pace before putting Kelly clear and this time Bingham added the conversion.
RBAI had Young sin-binned on 46 minutes for killing the ball, but Methody wasted the chance to extend their lead from the resulting penalty.
Bingham increased the advantage with a penalty from in front of the posts and then he sealed victory with a try in the 67th minute.
Methodist College – A Liddell, R Benade, P Colhoun, C McKee, C Kelly, J Bingham M Rainey, R Kane (Capt) S Weir M Lagan, A Thompson, M Campbell, P Boomer, M McIvor, J Gallagher Reps: E Bell, J McCreanor, R McAllister, C Boomer, A Dixon-McKnight, J McCollum, J D'Arcy, R Hampton.
RBAI – F Wright, I Jones, N Brown, R Bell, R Campbell, J McClure, C Young, P Vincent, J Carruthers, D U-Hyon C Magee, J Scott, T Boyd, J Atkinson (capt), P Anderson. Reps: B Bowden, L McBratney, A McGrath, M Mairs, R Lyttle, J Coyle, C McCann, P Creighton.